Strategic Aim Summary
Defence is required to meet the obligations of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) in the conduct of activities which have potential environmental impacts. The EPBC Act sets thresholds for environmental assessment and approval based on the potential for an activity to have significant impact on the environment or matters of national significance.
The process for assessing environmental impacts and developing mitigation measures under the EPBC Act framework has been continually improved. This enables the efficient management of environmental risks through a consistent and robust process that provides Defence with the flexibility to train when, where and how it needs to train to achieve optimal preparedness.
Under this process, planning starts as early as possible to develop a preliminary concept of a proposed activity, its timing, location, potential environmental issues and required capability outcome. Establishing a plan early is critical, as it allows Defence to tailor a cost-effective approach by narrowing the focus to key issues, gathering the right data and consulting key stakeholders where required. Through the ongoing refinement of this process, Defence is able to identify the most important risks early, allowing planners to factor environmental matters into their activities, and enabling sensible and cost-efficient mitigation measures to be developed.
To achieve this strategic aim, Defence will:
- manage its activities to meet its environmental and heritage legislative obligations;
- maintain positive and proactive relationships with environmental regulators and other key stakeholder groups; and
- improve the consistent application and ownership of the environmental impact assessment process across Defence Groups and Services.
The Defence Environmental Plan details strategic actions, accountabilities and timeframes to support the achievement of these priorities.
Defence Estate Quality Management System